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"He was a genius. Anyone who saw him knows that. He is one of the greatest actors of this or any time. A great deal of that genius resided in those sad eyes. He was my brother in ways I can't explain."

David Chase, creator of The Sopranos

"We lost a giant today. I am utterly heartbroken."

– Lorraine Bracco, who played psychiatrist Dr Melfi in The Sopranos

"Jimmy was one of the most talented, authentic and vulnerable actors of our time. He was unorthodox and truly special in so many ways. He had the sex appeal of Steve McQueen or Brando."

– Brad Grey, Sopranos producer

"Shocked and saddened by James Gandolfini's passing. My deepest sympathies to his family and friends"

– Michael J Fox

"James Gandolfini was a dear friend and a great man. He will be greatly missed."

– actress Lindsay Lohan

"The great James Gandolfini passed away today. Only 51. I can't believe it."

– Bette Midler

"So sad to lose James Gandolfini. One of the sweetest, funniest, most generous actors I've ever worked with."

– Susan Sarandon

"James Gandolfini what a nice guy, so funny and sweet. He will be sorely missed. Deepest condolences to his family."

– Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry

"I am heartbroken about James Gandolfini. He was a gentle giant and great man. I love this picture, I loved him."

– actress Rose McGowan

"Awful awful news. James Gandolfini will be missed. He was a great actor. Just great."

– Mia Farrow

"My thoughts and prayers go out to James Gandolfini's family. Extraordinary actor."

– Robin Williams

"People were surprised James Gandolfini was so different from Tony Soprano. That's because he was a great actor. Warm, gentle and funny."

– Armando Iannucci